Stairway to Heaven


The passing of President H.W. Bush taught us all about his humility and his faith.  His morning conversation with James Baker still resonates with me.  When asked what are we going to do today?  The President answered he was going to Heaven to see Barbara and their daughter.  I’m sure it was a loving reunion.  Heaven has played a large role in my earthly life through Led Zeppelin’s song Stairway to Heaven,  This week’s blog will chronicle how that song can help after another CRAZY week in the markets.


High School Dance

When the guitar solo started we all knew what we needed to do. Find a slow dance partner ASAP.  We had both been thinking about this moment since the dance started. The risk of the ask was replaced by the risk of what will happen when the music speeds up and the couple is forced to break their slow dance clutch.  We both know what is coming.  The same holds true for equity investors.  We know  the equity risk premium is going to end too.  How we handle this reality separates good dance parters and invest investment professionals.


Windy Road

At the five minute mark the the tempo changes from slow to fast.  The lyric of “if there is a bustle in your hedgerow don’t be alarmed now” signals the tempo change. That lyric is as confusing as the volatile market but the dancers and investors shouldn’t spend their time defining what a hedgerow is or if the market is in a correction or a bear market.  We wish investors could be as carefree as Stairway to Heaven dancers.

Trauma 

Why do I still vividly remember High School slow dances? How can we create a similar connection with our clients?  Real conversations about our life should trump beta and diversification. High School dancers who treat each other with respect and break their slow dance clutch will choose each other the next time Stairway to Heaven plays.  Wealth Advisors should treat their clients with the same respect and humility that President H.W. Bush treated people during his public and private life.  


Recent market gyrations should not signal the end of our wealth advisory dance.  The next conversations and the last song should emphasize our respect and empathy for the feelings we are both experiencing.

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